Himalayan Art Resources

Item: Tara (Buddhist Deity) - Green

སྒྲོལ་མ། སྣང་བརྙན་ཡོངས། 度母(本尊)(全像)
(item no. 176)
Origin Location Mongolia
Date Range 1800 - 1899
Lineages Uncertain
Size 88.90x63.50cm (35x25in)
Material Ground Mineral Pigment on Cotton
Collection Rubin Museum of Art
Catalogue # acc.# P1995.19.1
Notes about the Central Figure

Classification: Deity

Appearance: Peaceful

Gender: Female

Interpretation / Description

Green Tara (Tibetan: drol ma jang ku): Saviouress from all fears.

Tibetan: Drol ma jang ku

Emerald green in colour, peaceful and relaxed, Tara extends the right hand across the knee in the mudra (gesture) of supreme generosity while holding the stem of a blue utpala flower blossoming at the right ear. The left hand is held to the heart in the mudra of blessing and holds the stem of an utpala blossoming at the left ear. Adorned with a tiara of gold, jewels and three small blue flowers, she wears earrings, necklaces, bracelets and flowing silk garments of various colours. With the right leg extended in a relaxed manner, resting on a small lotus flower, and the left leg drawn up Tara is seated above a moon disc and lotus blossom surrounded by a blue-orange nimbus and bright red areola framed with red and white lotus flowers and dark green leaves.

Directly above is the peaceful goddess of longevity, of Ushnishavijaya, white in colour with three faces and eight hands; seated on a lotus flower surrounded by billowing green and blue clouds. Filling all the space surrounding the central figure, in neat geometric rows, are 333 miniature forms of Green Tara.

Tara is a completely enlightened buddha who in a previous life promised to appear, after enlightenment, in the form of a female bodhisattva and goddess for the benefit of all beings. Her primary activity is to protect from the 8 and 16 fears. Practiced in all Schools of Tibetan Buddhism her various forms are found in all classes of tantra - Nyingma and Sarma.

Jeff Watt 9-98

Related Items
Thematic Sets
Buddhist Deity: Tara (Repeated Figures)
Collection of Rubin Museum of Art: Painting Gallery 6
Buddhist Deity: Tara Main Page
Buddhist Deity: Tara, Green Main Page
Collection of Rubin Museum of Art: Mongolia
Subject: Composition - Repeated Figures Main Page